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Textile waste

The theme of this project is the potentials for substantial reduction in the material flow within the textile sector. In principle this reduction can take place by 1) reducing the environmental impact in the production phase, or by 2) expanding the life of the existing fibres, re-using the products, re-designing the textiles and recycling the materials. We will focus on the potential to reduce the volume along the lifecycle of textiles, where also the use, maintenance and washing of clothes within households play a decisive part. Special focus will be on the innovative role of design and designers.  

Our main objective is: How can a multidisciplinary approach to waste reduction including natural sciences, social sciences and cultural studies contribute to reduce the material flow and turning waste into material resources; using the textile chain as an example? However, we will develop a reverse system analysis where we have replaced the traditional cradle to grave approach with a grave to cradle perspective. Thus, our point of departure is not the production, but the textile waste. In the reverse life-cycle approach our point of departure is the two last phases in the production/consumption process: 1) the user-phase and 2) the recycling phase where waste is potentially transformed into resources. We will use the results from these phases to unravel back to retailers and producers; and to involve four North European design schools in the innovation processes.  WP1 will start with public statistical data on waste, combined with stakeholder interviews with the recycling industry and the local waste handling institutions. We will move backwards in the value chain and continue our stakeholder interviews with retailers, the textile industry, consumer organisations and public authorities. WP2 will concentrate on consumers and households. The decision to turn clothes into waste is taken by individuals. We will follow a selected sample of households during a period of 12 months. They will collect all clothes taken out of use and separate them into different categories. WP3 will focus on two dimensions in the maintenance of clothes: the washing and drying process in households. The Norwegian chemical household industry represented by Lilleborg will participate in this part of the project. WP4 will to look at historical experiences. Textiles have historically been very expensive and therefore had to be utilized in an economic way. WP5 will add a European dimension to the project. We will make available our results to four design schools and involve teachers and students in these schools in a creative work. Their task is to build scenarios for textile consumption and to construct products in line with the identified challenges. WP6. The results will be a part of a small-scale exhibition and represents the creative input to work package six. This work packages will be constructed around working groups where designers will present their work for the textile industry and the recycling industry. The project duration is four years, and includes a Ph.D. study for Kirsi Laitala within work packages 2 and 3 at NTNU (faculty of Engineering Science and Technology, Department of product design). Supervisors will be professors Casper Boks and Ingun G. Klepp.

Emneord: tekstiler, levetid, avhending image(arrow) Oppsummering, september 2011





Start: 01.03.2009

Slutt: 01.03.2013